Photo Credit: Kevin Sousa Photography
The Ontario Minor Hockey Association has released the seventh edition of the U16 and U18 AAA Top 5 Rankings presented by Hudl for the 2022-2023 regular season. These rankings will be released on a bi-weekly schedule.
Playoffs are just around the corner. Here's where teams stand ahead of their league qualifiers.
The Hurricanes take control of the top spot while the Express suffer their first loss of the season.
Blake Clayton (Burlington Eagles): Plays a full 200-foot game which allows him to be relied upon in every situation. As a center, he understands how to support his defencemen coming low for easy breakouts or to help keep the opposing team from attacking their net. Clayton can attack well off the rush, using his body to protect pucks as he looks to drive the net or find supporting teammates. Inside the offensive zone, he cycles pucks well and gets off the boards to attack inside the dots and use his hard release to pick a corner.
Landen Stevens (Ajax-Pickering Raiders): A smart centre who values the puck and can make plays off the rush or cycle. Strong on faceoffs and understands the small details of the game, such as having strong stick detail and how to time his routes. Stevens likes to attack defencemen on the forecheck where he can disrupt a lot of plays and can finish his checks hard. He looks to find good passing seams when he comes off the boards and positions himself well to get pucks in good shooting areas.
The Jr. Colts jump up to the number one spot, while the Raiders climb above the Waxers to enter the top three.
Dom Battaglia (Richmond Hill Coyotes): A great first year U18 forward who is equally effective in both the offensive and defensive zone. He is a great shutdown forward who has a tremendous work ethic and plays a physical game on the defensive side of the puck. Battaglia is very tough to play against and is comfortable playing against the opponents highest scoring lines. A very good skater with excellent mobility and agility. Uses his strong skating skills and high hockey IQ to be an offensive threat every time on the ice. This season he leads the Coyotes in scoring with reaching the 20 goal plateau this regular season.
Ethan Yantha (Guelph Jr. Gryphons): A second year who returns to U18 after helping his Guelph Jr. Gryphons capture the OMHA U18 AAA title last season. His experience is evident as he shares the team lead in scoring for the Gryphons while bringing leadership and a great work ethic in each and every game. Yantha's offensive game is continuously evolving as he makes his linemates a threat each and every shift. Plays hard in all zones and is a total 200-foot player who continues to improve his game.
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